Away point is step in right direction for Burnley FC Women

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Burnley FC Women’s FA WNL Division 1 North title hopes took another step forward despite a goal-less draw against rivals Brighouse Town Ladies at the Yorkshire Payments Stadium on Sunday.

The Clarets still have a six-point advantage and game in hand over second place Chester Le Street Town Ladies with five games remaining.

Keeper Lauren Bracewell turned in a player of the match performance to ensure a clean sheet.

A Brighouse shot from distance deceived Bracewell, but she smothered the ball at the second attempt.

Shortly afterwards another long range shot from Brighouse’s Emma Pilling was well collected by Bracewell.

Both teams pressed for an opening though the bobbly pitch and a strong bitter wind hindered them.

Another shot at goal saw Bracewell read the situation and calmly claim the ball at the far post.

Bracewell then came out on top on a running battle with prolific scorer Charlotte Proud.

On the half hour, a well weighted cross pitched towards Proud, who headed at goal from close range and forced a superb reflex save.

The Clarets continued to soak up pressure and Proud challenged Bracewell on a run into the box, but the keeper was first to intercept.

Proud’s frustration continued when, after a tussle with defender Dani Cooper, she sliced an effort wide.

The Clarets were pleased to hear the half-time whistle and have a chance to regroup.

After the break, Lynette Craig played a high ball forward to Sarah Greenhalgh, and as she attempted to lob the keeper on the 18-yard line, the ball ran wide of the upright.

The Clarets defended well as Brighouse looked to re-establish the balance of the game but Greenhalgh slotted a ball through the home defence to Lizzy Hamer, who shot from an angle only to see the keeper dive and save her effort.

Burnley played a free kick across goal which was just too high for Sammy Fleck, and Brighouse saw a similar cross pass just wide of goal.

A header from a Brighouse corner was easily caught by Bracewell, as were a couple of shots from distance.

The Clarets last chance was in the final moments, when Greenhalgh weaved through on the right but shot off target.

On Sunday, Burnley host Barnsley at Padiham FC’s Ruby Civic Arena, kick-off 2 p.m.